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Nine Inches: Stories
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St. Martin's Publishing Group 2013
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The New York Times–bestselling author of Mrs. Fletcher "turns his satiric gaze on suburbia and unearths gem after gem about modern life" (Connie Ogle, Miami Herald).
Nine Inches, Perrotta's first true collection, features ten stories—some sharp and funny, some mordant and surprising, and a few intense and disturbing.
Whether he's dropping into the lives of two teachers—and their love lost and found—in "Nine Inches," documenting the unraveling of a dad at a Little League game in "The Smile on Happy Chang's Face," or gently marking the points of connection between an old woman and a benched high school football player in "Senior Season," Perrotta writes with a sure sense of his characters and their secret longings.
Nine Inches contains an elegant collection of short fiction: stories that are as assured in their depictions of characters young and old, established and unsure, as any written today.
"With a deft command of structure, [Perrotta] allows multiple characters to cross paths, make mistakes and sometimes correct them, creating ripple effects and counterpoints that add up to a satisfying whole." —Alix Ohlin, The New York Times
"Nine Inches is a razor-sharp and highly entertaining collection of short stories. It's also a masterful examination of the fragilities that lie just beneath the surface of our everyday veneers." —Patrick Ryan, Toronto Star
"Told with wit and grace, Perrotta's story collection lays bare the shifting relationships we all suffer and seldom comprehend, presenting characters who are ambushed by the hidden intentions of people they thought they knew." —Publishers Weekly

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Format:
Adobe EPUB eBook, Kindle Book, OverDrive Read
Street Date:
09/10/2013
Language:
English
ISBN:
9781250034694
ASIN:
B00CQYAVP2

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APA Citation (style guide)

Tom Perrotta. (2013). Nine Inches: Stories. St. Martin's Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Author Date Citation (style guide)

Tom Perrotta. 2013. Nine Inches: Stories. St. Martin's Publishing Group.

Chicago / Turabian - Humanities Citation (style guide)

Tom Perrotta, Nine Inches: Stories. St. Martin's Publishing Group, 2013.

MLA Citation (style guide)

Tom Perrotta. Nine Inches: Stories. St. Martin's Publishing Group, 2013.

Note! Citation formats are based on standards as of July 2022. Citations contain only title, author, edition, publisher, and year published. Citations should be used as a guideline and should be double checked for accuracy.

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      • bioText: Tom Perrotta is the author of several works of fiction: Bad Haircut, The Wishbones, Election, and the New York Times bestselling Joe College and Little Children. Election and Little Children were made into critically acclaimed movies. The Leftovers and Mrs. Fletcher were both adapted into HBO series. He lives outside of Boston.
      • name: Tom Perrotta
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title
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fullDescription
The New York Times–bestselling author of Mrs. Fletcher "turns his satiric gaze on suburbia and unearths gem after gem about modern life" (Connie Ogle, Miami Herald).
Nine Inches, Perrotta's first true collection, features ten stories—some sharp and funny, some mordant and surprising, and a few intense and disturbing.
Whether he's dropping into the lives of two teachers—and their love lost and found—in "Nine Inches," documenting the unraveling of a dad at a Little League game in "The Smile on Happy Chang's Face," or gently marking the points of connection between an old woman and a benched high school football player in "Senior Season," Perrotta writes with a sure sense of his characters and their secret longings.
Nine Inches contains an elegant collection of short fiction: stories that are as assured in their depictions of characters young and old, established and unsure, as any written today.
"With a deft command of structure, [Perrotta] allows multiple characters to cross paths, make mistakes and sometimes correct them, creating ripple effects and counterpoints that add up to a satisfying whole." —Alix Ohlin, The New York Times
"Nine Inches is a razor-sharp and highly entertaining collection of short stories. It's also a masterful examination of the fragilities that lie just beneath the surface of our everyday veneers." —Patrick Ryan, Toronto Star
"Told with wit and grace, Perrotta's story collection lays bare the shifting relationships we all suffer and seldom comprehend, presenting characters who are ambushed by the hidden intentions of people they thought they knew." —Publishers Weekly
reviews
      • premium: False
      • source: Kirkus Reviews (starred)
      • content:

        "The acclaimed novelist displays perfect tonal pitch in this story collection, as nobody explores the darker sides of suburbia with a lighter touch."

      • premium: False
      • source: Publishers Weekly
      • content: "Told with wit and grace, Perrotta's story collection lays bare the shifting relationships we all suffer and seldom comprehend, presenting characters who are ambushed by the hidden intentions of people they thought they knew."
      • premium: False
      • source: People
      • content: "In this strong collection of short stories, Perrotta once again peeks behind the living-room curtains of manicured suburbia and imagines characters whose lives are less than tidy."
      • premium: False
      • source: Harper's Bazaar
      • content: "[A] wickedly funny collection of suburbia-skewering stories."
      • premium: False
      • source: New York magazine
      • content: "Perrotta's stuff is dark, but it goes down so easy, especially when bite-size."
      • premium: False
      • source: Entertainment Weekly
      • content: "The novelist who so perfectly captured the insanity of suburbia in The Leftovers and Little Children returns to the form that made him famous in this darkly comic collection of stories."
      • premium: False
      • source: Boston Globe
      • content: "The stories hang together so beautifully, the writing is so stylistically consistent, and the themes are so closely related, the book comes across like a novel, or a collection of interlocking stories. It's as if we're wandering through a single community in a particular town, as in James Joyce's "Dubliners" or in so many of Ann Beattie's and Raymond Carver's collections. We're in PerrottaWorld, where the stories and characters and their concerns all seem to rhyme with one another."
      • premium: True
      • source: Publisher's Weekly
      • content:

        July 8, 2013
        Told with wit and grace, Perrotta’s (The Leftovers) story collection lays bare the shifting relationships we all suffer and seldom comprehend, presenting characters who are ambushed by the hidden intentions of people they thought they knew. After discovering his wife’s infidelities, one man wonders how “he could have spent so much time on earth... and understood almost nothing about his life and the lives of the people he was closest to.” This lament could be echoed by many of the characters in these stories: the lonely grandmother, the disappointed father, the pizza delivery boy who didn’t get into college. A former high school football player, suffering a severe concussion, remarks, “One day you feel pretty decent, the next you’re a wreck.” A doctor separated from his wife observes that “good things turned to shit all the time, and you couldn’t always see it coming.” Yet the stories aren’t all bleak; Perrotta allows some of his characters to find redemption, such as a mother who chaperones a high school party and forges an unexpected friendship with a cop who once pointlessly hassled her and her daughter: “For a little while, it’s like the world just stops, and there’s nothing you can do but sit tight and wait for it to start moving again.”

      • premium: True
      • source: Kirkus
      • content:

        Starred review from July 15, 2013
        The acclaimed novelist displays perfect tonal pitch in this story collection, as nobody explores the darker sides of suburbia with a lighter touch. Perrotta's novels have become more thematically ambitious since his popular breakthrough (Little Children, 2004), so his return to short stories might initially seem like a career stopgap, a creative breather before the next big book. All of these stories are stereotypically suburban; in fact, all of them could take place in the same (unnamed) suburb, though maybe it comes with the territory that all suburbs are pretty much the same. The stories that go down easiest are never less than entertaining, while the pricklier ones have an ineffable sadness, an existential despair, that doesn't necessarily fit the suburban stereotype but which doesn't lie too far beneath the surface within this incisive, empathic and provocative fiction. Whether the protagonists are high school kids anticipating a richer adulthood or disillusioned adults (often widowed or divorced) who are struggling to find some reason to persevere, the stories illuminate flawed, very human characters without a trace of condescension. In the title story, a young teacher with a pregnant wife and difficult daughter finds temporary respite as chaperone at a middle school dance but returns home with a deeper sense of missed opportunity and loss. There's another school dance in the concluding "The All-Night Party," where a divorced woman and the cop who had once given her a ticket share an unlikely flirtation, and she hopes that those heading for college will discover that "the world was about to become much larger and more forgiving, at least for a little while." Throughout the collection, there is estrangement between neighbors who were formerly friends, between husbands and wives who have suffered betrayals, between kids who don't know any better and adults who haven't learned any better. As deeply satisfying and insidiously disturbing as the author's longer fiction.

        COPYRIGHT(2013) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

      • premium: True
      • source: Booklist
      • content:

        August 1, 2013
        The main selling point of any short story collection is, arguably, this: if you don't like one story, you can simply skip ahead to the next one. Most best-selling authors with name-brand recognition have published at least one volume of short stories. A well-regarded humorist like David Sedaris is blessed with a trademark wit that can turn almost any subject matter into absurdist gold. But the art of crafting short stories effectively is not necessarily a skill inherent to even the most talented novelists. Perrotta is a successful author, with memorable hits like Election (1998) and Little Children (2004), both of which were turned into acclaimed Hollywood films. Its eyebrow-raising title aside, Nine Inches (a reference to the minimum distance that chaperones must maintain between the hormonal kids at a middle-school dance) isn't going to ignite anyone outside of Perrotta's loyal fan base. These stories of unhappy suburbanites are serviceable but lacking a killer emotional hook, with the exception of One-Four-Five, a true standout about a sad-sack pediatrician who becomes obsessed with blues music while going through a midlife divorce.(Reprinted with permission of Booklist, copyright 2013, American Library Association.)

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        April 15, 2013

        The 12 stories in this first collection by New York Times best-selling author Perrotta include "The Smile on Happy Chang's Face," the Boston Book Festival's first One City, One Story selection.

        Copyright 2013 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        October 15, 2013

        Perrotta's stories are gems mined from the ball fields, living rooms, and barrooms of suburbia. Optimally, short stories are not mininovels but instead take a certain incident or atmosphere and elaborate, and with Perrotta, one sees how a single moment--a crushing collision on a football field, a hit batter at a kids' baseball game--can totally alter the course of a lifetime. In "Backrub," a teen watches his peers go to prestigious colleges while he becomes a pizza and drugs delivery guy. Why? Because he blew off writing the essays for applying to what he calls his "safety" schools. In "One-Four-Five," a session of unplanned, drunken parking lot sex ushers a doctor out of his practice and marriage and into a hopeful career as a blues musician jamming on "Born Under a Bad Sign." The collection's title? The distance dancers must remain separated at a junior high school prom. VERDICT Perrotta (The Leftovers) has a keen eye and sense of style. Ten short stories, all A-plus for anyone who enjoys short fiction or fiction, period. [See Prepub Alert, 3/18/13.]--Robert E. Brown, Oswego, NY

        Copyright 2013 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

      • premium: True
      • source: Library Journal
      • content:

        Starred review from October 15, 2013

        Perrotta's stories are gems mined from the ball fields, living rooms, and barrooms of suburbia. Optimally, short stories are not mininovels but instead take a certain incident or atmosphere and elaborate, and with Perrotta, one sees how a single moment--a crushing collision on a football field, a hit batter at a kids' baseball game--can totally alter the course of a lifetime. In "Backrub," a teen watches his peers go to prestigious colleges while he becomes a pizza and drugs delivery guy. Why? Because he blew off writing the essays for applying to what he calls his "safety" schools. In "One-Four-Five," a session of unplanned, drunken parking lot sex ushers a doctor out of his practice and marriage and into a hopeful career as a blues musician jamming on "Born Under a Bad Sign." The collection's title? The distance dancers must remain separated at a junior high school prom. VERDICT Perrotta (The Leftovers) has a keen eye and sense of style. Ten short stories, all A-plus for anyone who enjoys short fiction or fiction, period. [See Prepub Alert, 3/18/13.]--Robert E. Brown, Oswego, NY

        Copyright 2013 Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

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Nine Inches, Perrotta's first true collection, features ten stories—some sharp and funny, some mordant and surprising, and a few intense and disturbing.
Whether he's dropping into the lives of two teachers—and their love lost and found—in "Nine Inches," documenting the unraveling of a dad at a Little League game in "The Smile on Happy Chang's Face," or gently marking the points of connection between an old woman and a benched high school football player in "Senior Season," Perrotta writes with a sure sense of his characters and their secret longings.
Nine Inches contains an elegant collection of short fiction: stories that are as assured in their depictions of characters young and old, established and unsure, as any written today.
"With a deft command of...
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